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#pounditThursday, September 21, 2023

Video: Did Knicks player thank referee Scott Foster after win?

Josh Hart gesturing

It is rare that you see NBA players thanking the officials instead of berating them. But that seems to be exactly what happened after Game 2 between the New York Knicks and the Miami Heat on Tuesday.

After the game, which the Knicks won 111-105 to even their second-round series at one game apiece, Knicks guard Josh Hart was shown on the TNT broadcast calling out to somebody off-camera. Lip-readers believed that Hart was saying, “Scott! Scott! Scott! Appreciate ya.”

Referee Scott Foster was the crew chief for Tuesday’s game. He is probably the most infamous ref in the NBA today and is nicknamed “The Extender” (or “The Equalizer”). Foster earned that nickname from NBA fans for his supposed tendency to call games in favor of the team trailing in a playoff series, thereby extending the series. The Knicks trailed the Heat in the series 0-1 heading into Tuesday’s game, but their win guaranteed at least one more home game at Madison Square Garden.

There were several questionable calls that appeared to benefit the Knicks down the stretch of Game 2. Heat big man Bam Adebayo fouled Knicks big Isaiah Hartenstein in the fourth quarter, apparently before Jalen Brunson began his shooting motion on a three. But the officiating crew reviewed the play and deemed that Brunson was in the act of shooting, giving the Knicks’ a momentum-swinging four-point play.

There was also a big whiff later in the quarter when a desperation shot by Heat forward Caleb Martin grazed the rim before the expiration of the shot clock and bounced to Heat teammate Gabe Vincent for an easy layup. But the officials did not review that play, ruling that Martin’s shot simply had not hit the rim and thus wiping away two crucial points for Miami.

Additionally, a couple of interesting fouls were called on the Heat in the second half, seemingly for just being there.

Of course, you could probably make a compilation of calls that went against the Knicks in Tuesday’s game as well. The above calls were the ones that Heat fans were most upset about though.

As for Hart, it is possible that he was just joking around and being friendly with Foster after the final buzzer. But there is evidence that NBA teams seem to have a gameplan for whenever Foster is refereeing.


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